It’s almost summer here in the Pacific Northwest.
How did your garage fare over the winter? I would say ours didn’t fare all that well. I might even take these garage tips and implement them this weekend.
Anyway, our garage is pretty garagey right now. Cobwebs; spider “stuff”; accumulations of things that don’t belong where they are, but were put there “for now” since it was cold outside and the garage isn’t heated.
Or, it could be because of laziness, or it could be because the “other side” of the garage is packed full of “stuff” and “my side” could accommodate.
Or, it could be because I have been rightsizing the interior of our home, and the items intended for a garage sale this summer are now staged in the garage.
Or, it could be ALL of these things!
I am still up in the air about the sale. Is it worth the time or the effort? In a couple of weeks, I will be sharing with you how to prepare and set up for an organized garage sale. If I end up having one, I will try and remember to take and share pictures.
Every time I get out of my car, I want to purge the garage. Really, I want to scream first, and then purge the garage. But, I haven’t had the time. I do have to say I am lucky enough to park my car in the garage. It looks as if my car may spend a couple of days outside while we purge, and, set up for the garage sale.
Along with the purge, comes the spring cleaning. Do you spring clean your garage? Cleaning isn’t my favorite thing to do in my house, so the garage is far from my favorite thing to clean. It’s just kind of icky and gross.
At least we don’t have mice. If we did, NOT MY JOB!
I wanted to share with you a few garage tips to help clean it up and to keep it the way you want it year-round. You will never get away from the cleaning part unless you hire someone, but, you can make it easier for everyone to find things, and make it easier for everyone to at least know where to put things away.
Here are my 10 Garage Tips
- Start by getting rid of all the items in your garage that you do not need, use, or love.
- Start off by donating what you can, and then recycle what you can. Then the rest goes to the dump.
- You are likely to find some “household hazardous waste” such as paint, cleaners, etc. Please don’t throw them down the drain or into the garbage. It’s easy enough to google what to do with these types of things in your area. Our waste management company does a great job with these things. I bet yours might too.
Here is an easy to read information about Household Hazardous Waste (HHW).
- The things you have chosen to keep? You have two options.
- You can go stage them on one side of the garage and do the following cleaning steps.
- Or, you can deal with them now, and do the cleaning steps later.
- I personally like to sort and organize on a clean floor, so I tend to stage and clean half.
- Once you have removed everything from the premises, it’s time to sweep the garage out to remove all the dirt, dust, and dead bugs that have accumulated during the winter. You can use a shop vac, “Webster”, or a long-handled broom to clean corners and places that are hard to reach.
- Clean your garage floor using a concrete floor cleaner. If you have kept your car inside your garage during the winter, you may also need to use an oil stain remover.
Clean your garage door by lightly sweeping it with a broom, soaping it with car wash soap, and hosing it off.
- Take a look at your space.
- what things do you still have
- put likes with likes
- plan where each of these “groups” of items is going to live. It’s easy to do some quick measurement and draw out your plan on paper or on your tablet.
- Then, decide what makes sense to organize what you have left.
Wall hooks to hang landscaping tools, gardening equipment, or bicycles and using shelves and storage bins to free up floor space. They also have overhead storage racks that attach to the rafters and are great for lightweight things that are used rarely.
- Make things easily accessible so you are able to put things away and able to get things out.
- Don’t overstack bins. One bin on top of another is fine. No more than that. That’s what shelves are for.
- Design shelving to work with your existing bins, as long as they meet the criteria below.
- Bins should be of equal size and structure so they are stackable.
- Make sure the lids go on easily and come off easily. If it’s difficult to get in a bin, chances are, the items will not get put in the bin, but on it!
- Label everything!
- You know that layout you created? Laminate it and place it where it can be seen. That way, family members know where things need to go.
- Don’t expect perfection. But do have expectations that people put things where they belong.
- Load the garage back up and enjoy all the extra time you have now that you don’t have to search for things!